This week’s SmackDown Live came from the Pepsi Center in Denver, just one week away from the Hell in a Cell pay-per-view.
The show opened up with Shinsuke Nakamura being interviewed by Renee Young. She asked him about Jinder Mahal’s recent degrading comments and he didn’t seem phased by any of it. He was more focused on winning the WWE Championship.
Then the Singh Brothers’ music hit and introduced the Modern Day Maharaja, who attacked Nakamura from behind. The King of Strong Style fought back, but the numbers game caught up to him as the Singh Brothers attacked. Mahal then hit Nakamura with the Khallas and showed that he is ready to defend his title.
The first match of the night was a women’s tag team match which featured Charlotte & Becky Lynch against SmackDown Women’s Champion Natalya and Money in the Bank winner Carmella.
The Queen of Harts and Ms. Money in the Bank took control early on, but the Queen and the Lass Kicker quickly regained momentum.
Carmella then hit Lynch with the Money in the Bank briefcase outside the ring, which caused enough of a distraction for Natalya to put Charlotte in the Sharpshooter for the submission victory.
The next match on the card was Bobby Roode vs. Mike Kanellis. The Glorious One made short work of Kanellis, only needing a spinebuster and a Glorious DDT to put him away. Dolph Ziggler then came out and proceeded to belittle Roode and how he got to WWE. Ziggler then promised to expose Roode for what he really was, nothing more than an entrance.
The Usos came out next to read the New Day “their rights” before their upcoming Hell in a Cell match at the pay-per-view for the SmackDown Tag Team Titles. They talked about how they were the best tag team in the division and how they were going to bring hell to the reigning tag champs.
The New Day interrupted and said while they usually crack jokes and plug their products, tonight was about how night in and night out they consistently had the match of the night and Hell in a Cell would be no different. The segment ended with the two teams staring each other down.
Next up was Baron Corbin vs. Tye Dillinger. Corbin was looking for revenge after what Dillinger and AJ Styles had done to him over the last few weeks. The Lone Wolf dominated the match, but the Perfect 10 got a quick roll-up to steal a win.
Styles then came on the titantron and belittled Corbin for not pushing himself every day. He said that if he stopped trying to take short-cuts, Corbin wouldn’t have lost to John Cena at Summerslam or lost his Money in the Bank briefcase a few months ago. The Phenomenal One then promised that short cuts won’t win Corbin the United States Championship at Hell in a Cell.
Just like on Monday Night RAW, Dana Warrior came out to the ring to honor three women who have battled breast cancer. They received their own pink SmackDown Women’s Champion belts while receiving a standing ovation from the SmackDown women’s division.
After that, Randy Orton took on Aiden English. Rusev was at ringside watching English’s back, most likely as a favor for helping him beat Orton a few weeks prior.
A Rusev distraction allowed English to take control briefly, but an RKO out of nowhere gave the Viper a win. The Bulgarian Brute attempted to catch Orton off guard, but quickly retreated and decided to wait until Hell in a Cell.
The main event was the much anticipated face-to-face confrontation between Shane McMahon and Kevin Owens. Before McMahon could make it out to the ring, Sami Zayn caught him backstage and warned him that he’s only caught glimpses of what Owens can do when he snaps.
McMahon assured Zayn that he isn’t trapped inside Hell in a Cell with Owens, but rather the other way around.
McMahon then made his way to the ring and quickly demanded that Owens come down to the ring as well. When the Prizefighter didn’t show up, the SmackDown Live Commissioner once again called him a coward.
He also vowed to change Owens’ life once that cell door closes and proceeded to change the rules of the match into falls count anywhere.
Owens then appeared in the crowd and egged McMahon on to fight him before trying to leave the arena. McMahon went after him and ran right into a trap on the arena concourse. The two started to brawl before Owens powerbombed McMahon through a merchandise table.
Owens then went back through the crowd and into the ring, where he vowed to destroy Shane O’Mac and make sure he wouldn’t get back up.
McMahon recovered and made his way back to the ring to fight back before Owens finally put him down with a pop-up powerbomb.
Once again, they did a great job at building up the Owens vs. McMahon feud. It’s personal and it’s intense, which makes me believe that these two are going to destroy each other this Sunday.
The other match that will more than likely steal the show is going to be The Usos vs. The New Day. Like I said last week, these two teams always put on great matches and Sunday will be no different.
Corbin vs. Styles should also be a pretty decent match. However, if they wanted to add one final touch to the storyline they should have had Styles confront Corbin face-to-face.
I still don’t understand what they are doing with the Women’s Title storyline right now. It seems as if they are focusing more on Carmella cashing in her Money in the Bank briefcase than on the actual match between Charlotte and Natalya.
We’ll see how this all plays out this Sunday at Hell in a Cell live on the WWE Network.